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Fireworks

Posted originally on the Archive of Our Own at http://archiveofourown.org/works/895179.

Rating: Teen And Up Audiences


Archive Warning: No Archive Warnings Apply
Category: F/M
Fandom: Discworld - Terry Pratchett, Harry Potter - J. K. Rowling
Relationship: Remus Lupin/Angua von Uberwald
Character: Remus Lupin, Angua von Uberwald
Additional Tags: Crossover, Humor
Stats: Published: 2004-09-26 Words: 2062

Fireworks
by copperbadge

Summary

Remus Lupin gets a little lost in the Discworld, and meets someone who really gets him.

Remus Lupin was lost.

Normally he was all right with being lost. Waking up strange places was a part of werewolf life. But
this time he was...well, not voluntarily lost, but voluntarily stupid enough to do something likely to
get him lost...

He looked around at the thousands of books lining the shelves. Somewhere between BS1285.43
(religious studies) and PC15.L4 (classical literature) he'd made a wrong turning. Or maybe not; he
just wasn't sure anymore. He wasn't used to navigating L-space, only really advanced wizards were
supposed to do that -- or really good librarians, and while he'd worked detentions in the school
library before, he knew himself to be a sloppy shelf-reader and an inattentive attendant.

He sniffed, thoughtfully. If he was anywhere even near his destination, he ought to be able to smell --

Ah.

Yes.

There it was.

The scent of Orang-otang filled his nostrils like a very nostril-filling scent. He always forgot how
pungent apes were.

He followed his nose for a while, ducking the occasional flapping book and rumbling wild study
carrel, until he found himself under the great dome of the library at Unseen University.

Aaaaah.

Unseen was as close to home as Remus got these days. He'd had some good times as an
undergraduate here, and even got an invitation to stay on as a professor, though the thought of living
in Ankh-Morpork (citie of one thousande surprises, number one being the chewable water) did not
have much appeal. Still, it was nice to come back occasionally.

He waved to the Librarian, who waved a long-fingered prehensile foot back, and strolled out of the
great library, into the night air of the city. A few minutes later he was slipping through the crack in
the wall, dodging down into Peach Pie street, and heading for the one bar in the multiverse where a
werewolf could really let his hair down.

Ankh-Morpork, which was part of a world that sat incongruously on the backs of four elephants
(who themselves balanced on the shell of a giant space turtle named A'Tuin) was not a popular
destination for most Earth wizards; it had very little to recommend it as a vacation spot -- indeed, the
Disc as a whole was only really well-beloved by those living on it. But it was one of the few cities
where muggle, undead, and wizard all lived in, if not harmony, then at the very least the knowledge
that the others existed. It had Unseen U, Remus' alma mater and, it was acknowledged, a good place
to get an education for an alert young man. It also had Biers.

He pushed the door open happily, and was greeted with a seven-fingered wave from Igor, the owner
of the bar and a nice fellow, who had three sympathetic ears and gave credit to regulars.

"Usual, Lupe?" he asked, as Remus settled in at the counter. Remus nodded, and a dulce de leche*
appeared in short order. It was safer to order alcohol than any water-based drink, in Ankh-Morpork,
and it was certainly safer not to order the beer, which was thin and pale and had already seen
someone's kidneys, more than likely.

* Normally a harmless caramel custard, in Biers a Dulce de Leche was milk, caramel, rum, and, if your tastes ran that
way, a dash of what Igor usually referred to as "this or that", generally acquired from the local butcher.

"Haven't theen you about much," Igor continued. He passed a few pints to a shadowy figure who
carried them back to a dim booth, and smiled a horribly friendly smile. "Work keepin' you away?"

"Bad doings back home," Remus replied, resting his chin in his hands. He was better-dressed than
most of the inhabitants of the bar, and more human looking than almost all of them, but he never felt
out of place, here. He knew there were things more terrible than him in the shadows, and it
comforted him.

"Want to tell your thtory?"

"Maybe after another drink," Remus said with a smile. Igor nodded, and left him alone to
contemplate his misery. The rise of a Dark Lord could bring a man down, if let.

He enjoyed listening to the various squeaks, clicks, growls, and occasional human words from the
corners of the bar, where people he liked to consider distant kin were dealing with problems greater
than his. After a moment, the door banged open, and Remus' nostrils twitched. Another werewolf.

He studiously avoided looking, as he always did; people who stared in Biers might, if uncautious,
find themselves less an eye*. So he was mildly surprised when an attractive and above all human-
looking young woman took a seat two stools down, and ordered a beer.

* Though Igor had plenty of spares in the pickle jar on the table.
She was wearing the white-shirt-and-brown-trousers uniform that Remus recognised as City Watch,
though back when he was at school the Watch hadn't been much to worry about. Now, of course, it
was a different matter -- the Watch had a lot of power in the city. And she was no exception. Even
out of her armour, she looked like she could cause worries. She looked like she could make his
worries worry. And she was looking at him. He turned away quickly, but not before her own nostrils
had flared.

"You should know it's not polite to stare," she said, as he studied his drink.

"Sorry miss," he murmured.

"It's not as if you've never seen one before," she continued.

"I was just surprised, that's all."

"Because I'm in the Watch?"

"No," he said, realising that she was possibly trying to pick a fight. He turned to face her. "Because
you look so goddamned human, if you must know."

"So do you," she replied, meeting his gaze levelly. She had an enormous mass of white-blonde hair,
and a clever, angular face that, he thought, bespoke something of the mountain areas. "You're staring
again."

"Let me buy you a drink," he stammered. She narrowed her eyes.

"No," she said finally.

"Why not?"

"Because you look so goddamned human," she replied. "I've had it about up to here with men who
can't decide who the hell they are."

She turned back to her drink and downed it. Igor poured her another before tapping his finger on the
bar in front of Remus. "Best let her alone, lad. She's a fighter, that one."

"What's she so angry at me for? I didn't mean to stare," Remus said softly.

"Got left, didn't she? Her man the Captain done run off with a dwarf girl."

Remus blinked. "Not Captain Carrot?" Everyone knew Carrot.

"Aye."

"And a dwarf girl?"

"Well, Captain's a dwarf himself, isn't he? Anyhow, let her alone. She'll only cause you trouble."

Remus finished his drink. "I don't mind trouble," he said. Igor mixed him a second.

"Milk?" the woman snorted, from her seat.

"This and that," Remus replied.

"Not a very manly drink, is it?" she asked. He turned to face her again.
"Miss, I am a wizard, a werewolf, and a teacher. If you are trying to pick a fight, you ought to know
that I already have a good two civil wars going on in my head, and they're just looking for a place to
wreak some external havoc."

She snorted again, and waved down Igor.

"What he's having," she said, pointing to Remus. "On him."

Igor glanced at Remus, who shrugged. He didn't have any Ankh-Morpork money, but the gold
content of a Galleon was high enough to support two drinking werewolves, if it had to. She slid over
to the stool next to him.

"You aren't from around here, are you?"

"I went to school here," he replied.

"Do you think," she asked slowly, "it's wise to threaten me?"

"I am not threatening anyone," he said, as her drink arrived. She tried it, and laughed.

"Sweet tooth!" she said. "You drink this by choice?"

"Beats the beer."

"You really aren't from around here. I don't think you're a wizard, either," she added. "Wizards wear
robes. And they're not supposed to drink in bars with women."

"You sat there," he pointed out. "I don't like robes. And where I come from, drinking in bars with
women," he added, "is sort of encouraged. It's rather how you get more wizards."

"Let's see some magic then," she said. He shrugged and drained his glass.

"Shazam. My drink's gone."

She grinned and drained her own. "Shazam. Come on, wizard, some real magic."

He glanced around. There was a strict rule against Changing, Sucking, Transforming, Boogeying,
and Eating of Human Flesh in Biers. It probably extended to magic.

"Let's take it outside," he said in a low voice.

***

"Wingardium Leviosa!"

"All right, but I bet you can't do it again."

"Every bloody dog on the street is flying through the air!"

"Sooner or later it's bound not to work."

At some point, though Remus couldn't recall precisely where, they'd stopped for a bottle of
Bearhugger's, which in addition to being a good way to quickly get drunk, was excellent for cleaning
motor parts and getting tarnish off jewelry. He had then proceeded to make a dog fly, which did not
impress Angua the Other Werewolf in the slightest, mainly because of a lack of fireballs, coloured
sparks, and glittery things in the air.
"I'm not going to make every damn dog in the city fly just to prove to you that a man hasn't got to
wear a dress and carry a six-foot bit of wood to be a wizard," he declared. "Where are we?"

"Hyde Park," she replied, as she stumbled onto the grass and settled down.

"Here, what're you doing?"

"Resting," she said. "Cos the world's started to spin."

"Hah! My world's always spinning."

"Don't people fall off?"

"Not likely," he replied, dropping down next to her and propping himself on his elbows.

"I still say it's not proper wizarding if there aren't any fireballs," Angua declared. She pointed the
empty Bearhuggers' bottle at the stars. "Shazam!"

"It's definitely not proper wizarding if you have to say Shazam," said Remus. He held up his wand
and searched his mind -- which was dissolving rather nicely into a pink cottony substance that made
the Dark Lord, being a werewolf, and the fact that he should be getting back to the Earth at some
point all seem rather far off. "First thing they teach you at wizarding school. No shazamming."

"Shazamming," Angua said, and started to laugh, turning to bury her face in his shirt until they died
down. "Come on, Wizard, let's see some fireballs."

"I'm trying," he mumbled, trying to remember the Latin. It eluded him.

So he tried something that seemed terribly logical at the time.

"Shazam!" he cried, pointing his wand up at the stars. There was an explosion of colour, high above
their heads, and a chrysanthemum of light filled the nighttime sky. Angua's eyes grew wide.

"Do it again!" she said. But before she could, another one went off. She sat up and looked at him.

"Are you doing that?" she demanded.

"Dunno," he replied easily. "Pretty, though."

"Yes, it is," said Angua, lying back. He realised, vaguely, that she had curled up against him. She
was warm, and her hand on his chest was making his skin prickle.

"You know, even in Ankh-Morpork..." he said thoughtfully. "Even here, I mean, here you've got
wizards wandering the streets, advertising that they're wizards, even here you can't tell anyone, can
you?"

"Bout what?" she asked, slurring a little.

"Werewolves. You can't tell anyone. And if you can tell 'em, they don't really want to know."

"And just try and date a human. Nothing but trouble," she said heavily. "Take it from me."

"Oh, I've tried. I've tried passing for human, I've tried being Out about it, I've tried everything under
the sun. Two suns."

"Gotta be who you are," she mumbled. He stroked her hair. Like moonlight, that hair, long and fine
and pale.

And, as her fingers began to clumsily undo the buttons on his shirt, he thought idly that it wasn't so
bad, being yourself, if you had someone else to be it with.

Then she kissed him, her moon-beam hair falling over his face, and any thought -- idle or otherwise -
- drifted gently from his mind.

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